Meet Dr. Martha Boone, 25 years practicing medicine, as she explains the consequences of Obamacare for doctors such as herself. (Video below)
The Washington Examiner- "Rob Bluey: This doctor fights Obamacare one patient at a time"
Medicare impacts Boone’s urology practice more than others because the bulk of her patients are older and require care for urinary problems that develop later in life. Boone has two employees who spend most of their time fighting with the government over payment problems.
“I absolutely detest that part of my life,” she said in disgust.
She said the situation became so bad with Medicaid, an insurance program for the poor, that she stopped seeing those patients four years ago. When the government paid none of its Medicaid bills for 18 months, Boone simply gave up. She doesn’t want the same to happen with Medicare, given the difficulties patients are already experiencing.
The AMA estimates one in four Medicare patients who are seeking a new primary care physician are experiencing difficulty finding one. That situation has played out repeatedly right in Boone’s office.
“In one day, I had three patients in the office whose primary care cardiologists had stopped taking Medicare and all three of these patients had to go to the emergency room,” Boone said. “This is absolutely a travesty.”
Boone said she’ll continue to make tradeoffs to practice medicine. Five years ago she moved to a less expensive home and two years ago her husband opted for a cheaper car.
But she won’t change the way she practices medicine. While some doctors have moved to a model of seeing up to 60 patients per day, Boone treats no more than 25 per day. “I will not go to a model where I only spend four minutes with a patient.”
Given the challenges, then why do it?
“Every day when I get in my car and go home, I can think of at least five to 10 people that I have really helped,” she said. “So many people don’t get that out of their job.”
Only now, in addition to helping people through medicine, she’s turning to political activism as well. Obamacare has made it necessary.
“I never imagined that I would have to become politically active to take good care of my patients,” Boone said. “That’s added a whole other element to the life of being a doctor.”
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